HOPE, John Adrian Louis (1860-1908)


HOPE, John Adrian Louis (1860-1908)
seventh Earl of Hopetoun and first Marquis of Linlithgow
son of the sixth Earl of Hopetoun and his wife, Etheldred Anne, daughter of C. T. S. Birch Reynardson, was born at Hopetoun, Scotland, on 25 September 1860. He was educated at Eton and Sandhurst, where he passed in 1879 but did not enter the army. In 1883 he became conservative whip in the house of lords, in 1885 a lord in waiting to Queen Victoria, and for the years 1887 to 1889 represented the Queen as lord high commissioner to the general assembly of the Church of Scotland. He was appointed governor of Victoria in 1889 and arrived in Melbourne on 28 November. A period of inflation was just coming to an end, and though efforts were made to bolster up a financial structure basically false, the position steadily deteriorated, and in May 1893 all the banks in Melbourne except four closed their doors and a long depression followed. Hopetoun travelled throughout the colony making a highly favourable impression on all he met. No other governor had ever been so popular and he left Australia in March 1895 to the regret of all.
After his return to Great Britain he was made a privy councillor, was appointed paymaster-general in the Salisbury government from 1895 to 1898, and then became lord chamberlain until 1900. In October he was appointed the first governor-general of Australia, arrived there in December and took part in the inauguration of the Commonwealth of Australia by the Duke of York on 1 January 1901. Immediately after arriving he had decided that the last premier of the senior state, Sir William Lyne (q.v.) should be asked to form the first Commonwealth government. But Lyne had been an opponent of federation and could not get a following, so Edmund Barton (q.v.) became the first prime minister. Hopetoun, however, was not destined to hold his position for a long period. He had been given a salary of £10,000 a year, and he had some reason to believe some adequate provision would be made for his expenses; but this was not done and an attempt to have his salary increased was not successful. £10,000 was granted to pay the exceptional expenses incurred on account of the royal visit, but nothing else was done, and in May 1902 Hopetoun resigned. He believed that he could not carry out the functions of his office unless he were prepared to spend an additional amount of £16,000 each year or even more. Later governors were allowed the sum of £5500 a year for expenses. Hopetoun, who had to provide for two residences, one at Sydney and another at Melbourne, had been placed in a quite unreasonable position. After his return he was secretary for Scotland for a few months in 1905, but failing health, he had always had a frail constitution, prevented him from taking a further part in politics. He died at Pan on 29 February 1908. He was created Marquis of Linlithgow on 27 October 1902. He married in 1886 the Hon. Hersey Alice Eveleigh De Moleyne, daughter of the 4th Lord Ventry, who survived him with a daughter and two sons, the elder of whom, Victor Alexander John Hope, 2nd Marquis of Linlithgow, born in 1887, was viceroy and governor-general of India from 1936 to 1943.
The Times, 2 March 1908; The Argus, Melbourne 2 March 1908; H. G. Turner, A History of the Colony of Victoria and The First Decade of the Australian Commonwealth; Burkes Peerage, etc., 1908.

Dictionary of Australian Biography by PERCIVAL SERLE. . 1949.

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